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With An Appreciation By 


Grateful Acknowledgement is hereby made to the New 
York Times Magazine for Cosmic Religion; to the Jewish 
Telegraph agency for material from its files; and to the 
New History Society for Militant Pacifism. 




















The following sketch has been prepared by the publishers, 
in the belief that it may prove of aid to the readers of this 
book, and is based, in part, on material prepared by Dr. 
Einstein's representatives, and on various published 
articles and books. 

Albert Einstein, discoverer of the theory of 
relativity, and one of the greatest thinkers of the 
modern era, was born at Ulm, on the Danube, 
March i 1879. His early years were spent in Munich 
where his father had become part owner of an 
electro-technical plant, and it was here that the boy, 
who, curiously enough, showed no extraordinary 
aptitude or brilliance as a student, nevertheless 
received the initial impulses which turned his 
thoughts to physics. His childhood was anniversary 
has just been signalized in world-wide 
demonstrations and celebrations burst upon an 
unprepared and skeptical scientific world. This 
event was the publication in the Annals of Physics 
(Anna/en der Physik) of Einstein's first statement 
of what later was to become famous as the Special 
Theory of Relativity. He was then 26 years old, and 
the scientists of the day laughed at the obscure 


heretic who thus boldly challenged the Newtonian 
law of gravitation and the physical universe 
postulated by the great Englishman. That first essay 
was called On the Electro Dynamics of Moving 
Bodies and it has been the basis for his life-work. 
All that Einstein has since done has been in the 
nature of expansion and clarification of that initial 

Tie became assistant professor at the Zurich 
Academy in 1909. In 1911 he was offered and 
accepted a professorship at Prague, but two years 
later he returned to Zurich as Professor in 
Theoretical Physics at the Polytechnic Academy 
where he had been educated. Some months prior to 
the outbreak of the World War he was called to the 
Prussian Academy of Sciences at Berlin and was 
appointed Director of the newly-founded Kaiser 
Wilhelm Institute for Physics. With this 
appointment came the opportunity to arrange and 
formulate the daring speculations which had 
occupied his thought during the preceding lonely; 
the mechanical regulations of the schools and their 
rigid, unimaginative enforcement— the inevitable 
concomitants of the German education of his day — 
were a severe trial to his sensitive spirit and he 
found refuge for his inarticulate longings in a 
profound religious feeling which he soon began to 
express in brief songs. After several years, the 
decline of his father's business compelled the 


family to move to Milan, and their comfortable, 
middle-class life came to an end. Einstein was by 
then 15 years old and his period of care began. 

In Milan he left school for a while to study art. Italy 
was more congenial to his spirit than his native 
Germany — the curious affinity of intellectual 
Germans for the warmer Italian sky is here again 
demonstrated — and his genius began to develop. 
The necessity for earning a living sent him to 
Zurich to enter the Polytechnic Academy. He failed 
in his first attempt but a year later, after a course at 
the Canton School of Aarau, he succeeded in 
entering and soon displayed outstanding ability in 
mathematics and physics. He remained in 
Switzerland for several years, following his student 
years as an instructor at Zurich and in 1902 
assuming a post in the Bern Patent Office where he 
served as engineer and technical advisor. His free 
time he devoted to the pursuit of his own scientific 

In 1905 the event whose twenty-fifth eight years 
and he now began the preparation of his great 
work, finally published in 1916, as The General 
Theory of Relativity. This work he has since 
subjected to several modifications as the lines of his 
own investigations suggested, and in 1929 he 
announced his Unitary Field Theory, which is an 
attempt to reduce the laws of gravitation and 
electro-magnetics to a unified system of 


coordinated mathematics. This fusion he achieves 
by the use of a new kind of space-time geometry 
specially designed for the purpose. Recently, in 
various ad dresses, he has announced that his next 
step would be to bring the submicroscopic world of 
electrons and protons, as well as quanta, into the 
fold of one unified mathematical law. And he has 
also stated his new hypothesis of space as the one, 
all- embracing reality. 

1c 1c 1c 

This bare account outlines the life-work of the most 
original and daring speculative thinker and 
scientific investigator since Newton. Einstein's 
fame rests on his two published theories and on the 
astronomical observations of physical phenomena 
which confirmed them. He has overthrown 
universe which endured for three centuries and in 
its place has constructed a new one, incapable of 
comprehension to man's senses but subject to 
imprisonment and expression within the symbols 
of Einstein's mathematical formulas. He has 
destroyed the hitherto existing foundations of all 
physical science; he has added another dimension 
to the universe — time; and he has introduced us to 
this new universe which, per haps within the span 
of another four or five generations, will become as 
commonplace to the ordinary man as is the present 


Save in such elementary examples by which the 
newspaper public has been instructed, no simple, 
general statement of Einstein's theories is possible 
and no at tempt to define it need here be made. For 
the reader who is interested, there are several good 
analyses in English which meet the demands of the 
non-technical, lay student. What is important to 
mention, how ever, is the fact that the central idea 
of his work is a problem which has long occupied 
the minds of philosophers. Relativity, in itself, is 
not a new idea. The problem has been recognized 
for generations and the mind of man has long 
wrestled with its implications. But there is a vast 
difference between the philosopher who says "My 
idea of the world is the real world. But my 
neighbor has his own idea of the world and to him 
his idea is equally real. Hence there is no reality, 
only an idea of reality which each man makes for 
himself," and the theory propounded by Einstein 
which for the first time gives scientific validity to 
this conception by establishing its mathematical 
proofs. This is perhaps the clearest demonstration 
of the fact that Einstein is the imaginative thinker 
first and the scientist second. The scientist works in 
observatories and laboratories and from the 
observed results of thousands of experiments 
announces a deduced general law which accounts 
for the phenomena re corded. Einstein, the intuitive 
thinker, conceives an idea, develops its 
mathematical soundness, and then establishes its 

truth on the basis of observed phenomena. This is 
the reverse of the empirical scientific method and it 
is for this reason, perhaps, that his earliest 
statement of his ideas met with incredulity and 

Well, his case has now been won. To the world-old 
search for a 'standard of reference' by which to 
gauge the workings of the physical universe 
Einstein retorts that there is no standard of 
reference. A yard stick is one yard long only while 
it is at rest. Move it and it becomes shorter, and the 
faster it is moved the shorter it becomes. Similarly, 
we are accustomed to measure the events of our 
world in terms of time, the elapsing' of which we 
consider an un alterable,, absolute measure. 
Einstein de thrones this fetish of absolute time. His 
exact analysis of the idea of simultaneity 
demonstrates that every body in motion has its 
own time which elapses more slowly as the body 
moves more rapidly. Thus, the watch of the 
pedestrian runs faster than that of the flyer. An 
hour in the coffee house is shorter than an hour in 
the sub-way: we have no right to compare two 
differently moved clocks; not that the sub way 
clocks falls behind but that the time of the running 
train elapses more slowly. Because of the slight 
speeds involved in these examples, the differences 
in time are infinitesimal. However, when a body 
has a light-speed (186000 miles per second), its 


'time' ceases altogether, its 'clock' stands still. 
Einstein has said, "If a person were hurled at the 
velocity of light away from the earth and from a 
certain point allowed to return at the same speed, 
he would not become a second older in the interim 
even though the time of the earth had elapsed a 
thousand years while he was on his jour ney." 

Our physical universe as we have conceived it 
crumbles in the light of these teachings. Copernicus 
destroyed the notion of the absolute repose of the 
earth; Einstein destroys Absolutism entirely. 
Nothing is absolute, all is relative. There is thus no 
reality — only the Einsteinian reality of space. We do 
not live in a three-dimensional world of length, 
breadth, and height, in which temporal changes 
take place, but in a four-dimensional universe 
whose equally entitled dimensions are length, 
breadth, height, and time. 

How long Einstein's theories will continue to hold 
good cannot, of course, be predicted. He has 
himself made important modifications in them 
during the last 

twenty-five years, and his latest work, as yet not 
finally or definitely stated, does not carry to 
physicists the same inevitable logic and self- 
consistency which marked the earlier theories. 
Einstein is himself aware of these weaknesses and 
probably these points can never be resolved until 
gravitational and atomic theory have been brought 


into closer relationship. But as far as they go they 
have altered the entire direction of physical 
investigation and the energies of the world's 
scientists for generations will stem from the work 
of this German professor who is at once the most 
imaginative thinker and the greatest scientist of 
modern times. 

* * * 

Einstein the man is a much simpler person than his 
fame would lead one to suppose. He derives his 
greatest enjoyment from his piano, on which he 
improvises, and from his violin, on which he plays 
with the skill of a virtuoso. He is an ardent 
yachtsman, is fond of long, aimless tramps in the 
country (recall Nietzsche and his dictum that only 
thoughts conceived while walking are worth while), 
is deeply interested in modern world affairs, and 
has lent the enormous weight of his reputation to 
the service of his race in its struggle for national 
autonomy and freedom from oppression. He is 
what he himself describes as a 'militant pacifist' 
and unalterably opposed to war on any grounds. 
He hates crowds as much as he does honors, 
ceremonials, and speeches. To a man of his ironic 
mind, the acclaim of a multitude in capable of 
understanding ten words of his published work 
must be singularly amusing. 

Nevertheless, the world has insisted on according 
its recognition to his genius. He won the Nobel 


Prize for Physics in 1921 and in 1926 the Royal 
Astronomical Society of London presented him, 
with its gold medal. He has been honored by in 
numerable scientific and educational institutions 
and has received the homage of the most 
distinguished and prominent men of his time. His 
first long tour, in 1921, which led him to America, 
was in the nature of a triumphal procession and has 
been eclipsed only by the welcome which greeted 
him on his second visit to the United States in 1930. 
He stands unique and supreme among his 
contemporaries greatest mind and one of the most 
lovable men alive. 

A whole literature has grown up around the 
Einstein theories and the complete bibliography 
now totals more than 4000 separate works. Of these, 
a few of the useful books and articles in English are: 

GENERAL THEORY. New York, 1920. 



-THE UNITARY FIELD THEORY. Brooklyn, N. Y„ 1929. 

- ABOUT ZIONISM. London, 1930. 

Oxford, 1920. 


MATHEMATICAL. The National Review, vol. 94, pp. 
123-125. London, 1929. 

AND TIME The Contemporary Review vol. ii6, pp. 
639.643. New York, 1919. 


SEARCHER. London, 1921. 

UNIVERSE. New York, 1922. 


New York, 1921. 






(From an address delivered at the dinner for Professor 
Einstein in London , October 27, 1930 ) 

Napoleon and other great men were makers of 
empires, but these eight men whom I am about to 
mention were makers of universes and their hands 
were not stained with the blood of their fellow men. 
I go back 2,500 years and how many can I count in 
that period? I can count them on the fingers of my 
two hands Pythagoras, Ptolemy, Kepler, 
Copernicus, Aristotle, Galileo, Newton, and 
Einstein, and I still have two fingers left vacant. 

Since the development of Newton 300 years ago 
there have been nine generations of men, and those 
nine generations of men have not enjoyed the 
privileges that we are enjoying here to-night. We 
are standing face to face with one of those great 
men, looking forward to the privilege of hearing his 
voice, and maybe another 300 years will pass before 
another generation will enjoy that privilege. Even 
among those eight men I must make a distinction. I 
have called them makers of the universe, but some 
of them were only repairers. Only three of them 
made universes. Newton made a universe which 
lasted for 300 years. Einstein has made a universe, 
which I sup pose you want me to say will never 


stop, but I don't know how long it will last. These 
great men, they have been the makers of one side of 
humanity, which has two sides. We call the one 
side religion, and we call the other science. Religion 
is always right. Religion protects us against that 
great problem which we all must face. Science is 
always wrong; it is the very artifice of men. Science 
can never solve one problem without raising ten 
more problems. 

What have all of these great men been doing? Each 
in turn claimed the other was wrong, and now you 
are expecting me to say that Einstein proved that 
Newton was wrong. But you forget that when 
science reached Newton, science came up against 
that extraordinary Englishman. That had never 
happened to it before. Newton lent a power so 
extraordinary that if I was speaking fifteen years 
ago, as I am old enough to have done, I would have 
said that he had the greatest mind that ever man 
was endowed with. Combine the light of that 
wonderful mind with credulity, with superstition. 
He knew his people, he knew his language, he 
knew his own folk, he knew a lot of things; he 
knew that an honest bar gain was a square deal and 
an honest man was one who gave a square deal. He 
knew his universe; he knew that it consisted of 
heavenly bodies that were in motion, and he also 
knew the one thing you cannot do to anything 


whatsoever is to make it move in a straight line. In 
other words, motion will not go in a straight line. 

If you take a poor man and blindfold that man and 
say, "I will give you a thou sand pounds if you, 
blindfolded, will walk in a straight line," he will do 
his best for the sake of the thousand pounds to 
walk in a straight line, but he will walk in a circle 
and come back in exactly the same place. 

Mere fact will never stop an English man. Newton 
invented a straight line, and that was the law of 
gravitation, and when he had invented this, he had 
created a universe which was wonderful in itself. 
When applying his wonderful genius, when he had 
completed a book of that universe, what sort of 
book was it? It was a book which told you the 
station of all the heavenly bodies. It showed the 
rate at which they were traveling; it showed the 
exact hour at which they would arrive at such and 
such a point to make an eclipse. It was not a 
magical, marvelous thing; it was a matter-of-fact 
thing, like a Bradshaw. 

For 300 years we believed in that Bradshaw and in 
that Newtonian universe as I suppose no system 
has ever been believed in before. I know I was 
educated in it and was brought up to believe in it 
firmly. Then a young professor came along. He said 
a lot of things and we called him a blasphemer. He 
claimed Newton's theory of the apple was wrong. 


He said: "Newton did not know what happened to 
the apple, and I can prove this when the next 
eclipse comes." 

We said: "The next thing you will be doing is 
questioning the law of gravitation." 

The young professor said: "No, I mean no harm to 
the law of gravitation, but, for my part, I can go 
without it." 

"What, do you mean, go without it?" He said: "I 
can tell you about that afterward." 

The world is not a rectilinear world; it is a 
curvilinear world. The heavenly bodies go in 
curves because that is the natural way for them to 
go, and so the whole Newtonian universe 
crumpled up and was succeeded by the Einstein 
universe. I am sorry to have to say it. You must 
remember that our distinguished visitor could not 
have said it. It would not be nice for him to say it; it 
would not be courteous. But here in England is a 
wonderful man. This man is not challenging the 
fact of science; he is challenging the action of 
science. Not only is he challenging the action of 
science, but the action of science has surrendered to 
his challenge. 

When Newton said the line of nature is a straight 
line, William Hogarth said the line of nature is a 
curve. He anticipated our guest. 


I have talked enough. I rejoice in the new universe 
that Einstein has produced. 

This is a very distinguished assembly, but it is not 
an assembly composed exclusively of Einsteins. 
With a genius a certain solitude is inevitable. I will 
ask him to remember this, that in our human way 
we all have our little solitudes. My friend Mr. Wells 
has spoken to us of the secret sessions of the heart. 
Our lives are so small that we are too often in our 
solitude like children crying in the dark. 
Nevertheless our little solitude is a great and 
august solitude in which we can contemplate 
things that are greater than mankind. 





Everything that men do or think concerns the 
satisfaction of the needs they feel or the escape 
from pain. This must be kept in mind when we 
seek to understand spiritual or intellectual 
movements and the way in which they develop. 
For feeling and longing are the motive forces of all 
human striving and productivity — however nobly 
these latter may display themselves to us. 

What, then, are the feelings and the needs which 
have brought mankind to religious thought and to 
faith in the widest sense? A moment's 
consideration shows that the most varied emotions 
stand at the cradle of religious thought and 

In primitive peoples it is, first of all, fear that 
awakens religious ideas — fear of hunger, of wild 
animals, of illness, and of death. Since the 
understanding of causal connections is usually 
limited on this level of existence, the human soul 
forges a being, more or less like itself, on whose 
will and activities depend the experiences which it 
fears. One hopes to win the favor of this being by 
deeds and sacrifices, which, ac cording to the 
tradition of the race, are supposed to appease the 
being or to make him well disposed to man. I call 
this the religion of fear. 


This religion is considerably stabilized— though 
not caused — by the formation of a priestly caste 
which claims to mediate between the people and 
the being they fear, and so attains a position of 
power. Often a leader or despot, or a privileged 
class whose power is maintained in other ways, 
will combine the function of the priesthood with its 
own temporal rule for the sake of great security; or 
an alliance may exist between the interests of the 
political power and the priestly caste. 

* * * 

A second source of religious development is found 
in the social feelings. 

Fathers and mothers, as well as leaders of great 
human communities, are fallible and mortal. The 
longing for guidance, for love and succor, provides 
the stimulus for the growth of a social or moral 
conception of God. This is the God of Providence, 
who protects, decides, rewards, and punishes. This 
is the God who, according to man's widening 
horizon, loves and provides for the life of the race, 
or of mankind, or who even loves life itself. He is 
the comforter in unhappiness and in unsatisfied 
longing, the protector of the souls of the dead. This 
is the social or moral idea of God. 

It is easy to follow in the sacred writings of the 
Jewish people the development of the religion of 
fear into the moral religion, which is carried further 


in the New Testament. The religions of all the 
civilized peoples, especially those of the Orient, are 
principally moral religions. An important advance 
in the life of a people is the transformation of the 
religion of fear into the moral religion. But one 
must avoid the prejudice that regards the religions 
of primitive peoples as pure fear religions and 
those of the civilized races as pure moral religions. 
All are mixed forms, though the moral element 
predominates in the higher levels of social life. 
Common to all these types is the anthropomorphic 
character of the idea of God. 

Only exceptionally gifted individuals or especially 
noble communities rise essentially above this level; 
in these there is found a third level of religious 
experience, even if it is seldom found in a pure 

I will call it the cosmic religious sense. This is hard 
to make clear to those who do not experience it, 
since it does not involve an anthropomorphic idea 
of God; the individual feels the vanity of human 
desires and aims, and the nobility and marvelous 
order which are revealed in nature and in the world 
of thought. He feels the individual destiny as an 
imprisonment and seeks to experience the totality 
of existence as a unity full of significance. 
Indications of this cosmic religious sense can be 
found even on earlier levels of development— for 
example, in the Psalms of David and in the 


Prophets. The cosmic element is much stronger in 
Buddhism, as, in particular, Schopenhauer's 
magnificent essays have shown us. 

The religious geniuses of all times have been 
distinguished by this cosmic religious sense, which 
recognizes neither dogmas nor God made in man's 
image. Consequently there cannot be a church 
whose chief doc trines are based on the cosmic 
religious experience. It comes about, therefore, that 
precisely among the heretics of all ages we find 
men who were inspired by this highest religious 
experience; often they appeared to their 
contemporaries as atheists, but sometimes also as 
saints. Viewed from this angle, men like 
Democritus, Francis of Assisi, and Spinoza are near 
to one another. 

How can this cosmic religious experience be 
communicated from man to man, if it cannot lead 
to a definite conception of God or to a theology? It 
seems to me that the most important function of art 
and of science is to arouse and keep alive this 
feeling in those who are receptive. 

Thus we reach an interpretation of the relation of 
science to religion which is very different from the 
customary view. From the study of history, one is 
inclined to regard religion and science as 
irreconcilable antagonists, and this for a reason that 
is very easily seen. For any one who is pervaded 
with the sense of causal law in all that happens. 


who accepts in real earnest the assumption of 
causality, the idea of a Being who interferes with 
the sequence of events in the world is absolutely 
impossible. Neither the religion of fear nor the 
social- moral religion can have any hold on him. A 
God who rewards and punishes is for him 
unthinkable, because man acts in accordance with 
an inner and outer necessity, and would, in the 
eyes of God, be as little responsible as an inanimate 
object is for the movements which it makes. 

* * * 

Science, in consequence, has been accused of 
undermining morals — but wrongly. The ethical 
behavior of man is better based on sympathy, 
education, and social relationships, and requires no 
support from religion. Man's plight would, indeed, 
be sad if he had to be kept in order through fear of 
punishment and hope of rewards after death. 

It is, therefore, quite natural that the churches have 
always fought against science and have persecuted 
its supporters. But, on the other hand, I assert that 
the cosmic religious experience is the strongest and 
the noblest driving force behind scientific re search. 
No one who does not appreciate the terrific 
exertions, and, above all, the devotion without 
which pioneer creations in scientific thought cannot 
come into being, can judge the strength of the 
feeling out of which alone such work, turned away 
as it is from immediate practical life, can grow. 


What a deep faith in the rationality of the structure 
of the world and what a longing to understand 
even a small glimpse of the reason revealed in the 
world there must have been in Kepler and Newton 
to enable them to unravel the mechanism of the 
heavens, in long years of lonely work! 

Anyone who only knows scientific research in its 
practical applications may easily come to a wrong 
interpretation of the state of mind of the men who, 
surrounded by skeptical contemporaries, have 
shown the way to kindred spirits scattered over all 
countries in all centuries. Only those who have 
dedicated their lives to similar ends can have a 
living conception of the inspiration which gave 
these men the power to remain loyal to their 
purpose in spite of countless failures. It is the 
cosmic religious sense which grants this power. 

A contemporary has rightly said that the only 
deeply religious people of our largely materialistic 
age are the earnest men of research. 





One of the problems of pacifism is, that when 
pacifists come together, they usually have the 
feeling that they are consorting with the sheep 
while the wolves are out side. Thus they reach only 
their own kind who are already convinced, and do 
not advance very far. That is the weakness of the 
pacifist movement. 

The real pacifists, those who are not up in the 
clouds, but who think and count realities, must 
give up idle words, and fearlessly try to accomplish 
something of definite value to their cause. 

We all know that when a war comes, every man 
accepts the duty to commit a for his own country. 

Now those who realize the immorality of war 
should do their utmost to disentangle themselves 
from this old idea of military duty — and so become 
liberated from slavery. And for this liberation I 
have two suggestions: The first has, during war 
times, been tried and practiced in the past, by those 
who at great personal sacrifice have refused to do 
war service. However, the sincere pacifists to-day 
who mean to accomplish something must take this 
stand in times of peace, and in those countries 
where military service is compulsory the effect will 
be great. On the other hand, in other countries 
where military service is not compulsory, these 


same pacifists should openly assert that in case of 
war, they them selves would not participate. I 
recommend the recruiting of people with this idea 
in all parts of the world. And to the timid ones who 
fear imprisonments by their governments I say: 
"You need not fear imprisonment, for if you get 
only two per cent of the population of the world to 
declare in times of peace, 'We are not going to fight; 
we need other methods to settle inter national 
disputes/ this two per cent will be sufficient— for 
there are not jails enough in the world to hold 

The second method which I suggest appears less 
illegal. I believe that inter national legislation 
should be advocated to the effect that those who 
declare them selves as war resisters should be 
allowed during peace times to take up different 
kinds of strenuous or even dangerous work, either 
for their own countries or for the international 
benefit of mankind. This would prove that they do 
not oppose war for their own private comfort or 
because they are cowards or because they do not 
want to serve their own country or humanity. 

If, in order to prove this, we burden our selves with 
these various strenuous and dangerous occupations, 
we shall have gone far toward achieving the 
pacification of the world. I am convinced that such 
legislation can be brought about. 


I suggest to your organization (The New History 
Society) that you discuss these proposals at your 
coining meetings and adopt them, and I am pretty 
sure that whosoever takes the initiative along these 
lines, will, sooner or later, bring about such 
international legislation. 

I further suggest that war resisters should organize 
themselves internationally and collect funds to 
support those resisters in the different countries 
who to-day cannot make progress because of lack 
of financial backing. 

I advise and advocate very warmly and strongly 
the creation of an International War Resisters' Fund 
to support the active war resisters of our day. 

My final word to you is that those who are 
ambitious and sincerely dedicated to the cause of 
universal peace must have the courage to start, to 
initiate, and to carry on so fearlessly that the whole 
world will be forced to consider what they are 



It has not become a generally recognized axiom 
that the giant armaments of all nations are proving 
highly injurious to them collectively. 

I am even inclined to go a step further by the 
assertion that, under present day conditions any 
one state would incur no appreciable risk by 
undertaking to disarm— wholly regardless of the 
attitude of the other states. 

If such were not the case it would be quite evident 
that the situation of such states as are unarmed or 
only partially equipped for defense would be 
extremely difficult, dangerous, and 

— a condition which is refuted by the facts. I am 
convinced that demonstrative reference to 
armaments are but a weapon in the hands of the 
factors interested in their production or in the 
maintenance and development of a military system 
for financial or political — egotistic — reasons. 

I am firmly of the opinion that the educational 
effect of a first and genuine achievement in the 
realm of disarmament would prove highly 
efficacious, because the succeeding second and 
third steps would then be immeasurably simpler 
than the initial one; this for the obvious reason that 


the first results of an understanding would 
considerably weaken the familiar argument for 
national security with which parliamentarians of all 
countries now permit them selves to be intimidated. 

Armaments can never be viewed as an economic 
asset to a state. They must ever remain the 
unproductive exploitation of men and material and 
an encroachment on the economic reserves of a 
state through the temporary conscription of men in 
the active periods of their lives — not to mention the 
moral impairment resulting from a pre occupation 
with the profession of war and the moral processes 
of preparing a nation for it. 



A pacific settlement of conflicts and the 
international cooperation of intellectuals is not 
possible until military service and the armies are 
abolished. Men of standing would do a great 
service to humanity by endorsing the refusal our 
young men to perform military service. I am of the 
opinion that all thinking men should take a solemn 
pledge never to participate in any military activity, 
directly or indirectly. 

* it * 

I am rarely enthusiastic about what the League of 
Nations has done or has not done, but I am always 
thankful that it exists. 

* * * 

I hold that mankind is approaching an era in which 
peace treaties will not only be recorded on paper, 
but will also become inscribe in the hearts of men. 

•k * it 

Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be 
achieved by understanding. You cannot subjugate a 
nation forcibly unless you wipe out every man, 
woman, and child. Unless you wish to use so 
drastic a measure, you must find a way of settling 
your disputes without resort to arms. 


Internationalism does not mean the surrender of 
individuality. There is no reason why a nation or a 
race should not preserve its traditions. Why should 
the Jew ignore his past? Why should he fail to call 
some spot on the face of the globe his own? 

I can see no wrong in enlightened patriotism, in 
love of country and of race. But patriotism is no 
excuse for any group of men to assail its neighbors 
or to impress its point of view upon others by fire 
and sword. I believe with President Wilson in self 
determination for nations and for individuals. 




It is misleading to speak of the Christianization of 
the Jews or the Judaization of the Christians. What 
is happening is that the two groups are undergoing 
a common development on common ground and 
are both being influenced by the same factors, just 
as is the case with the heterogeneous mixture of 
peoples that inhabit Europe. 

To me the real problem is this: Why do so many 
Europeans and Americans bother so much about 
the little handful of Jews? But we cannot answer 
this question; the finding of the proper solution 
must be left to the others. 

The most deadly foes of Jewish national 
consciousness and Jewish national dignity are fatty 
degeneration— a lack of racial consciousness which 
is a result of excessive wealth and comfort— and a 
certain sort of inner dependence upon the non- 
Jewish environment, a dependence proceeding 
from the increased laxity of Jewish communal 
authority. The finest elements of the human soui 
can flourish only in the fertile soil of a community. 
How doubly great, therefore, is the moral danger of 
the Jew who has lost his kinship with his own 
group and whom the people of the nation in which 
he lives regard as an alien! Frequently such a 
situation has produced a harsh and dismal egoism. 


The external pressure bearing upon the Jewish 
people is particularly great at present. But our 
wretched position has proved beneficial to us. It 
has given rise to a revival of Jewish community life 
of which the generation before the last would never 
have dreamed. 

Thanks to this newly aroused feeling of solidarity 
among the Jews, the colonization of Palestine — 
which our devoted and far sighted leaders have 
already brought well under way, despite 
apparently unconquerable difficulties — has 
achieved such excel lent results that I have no 
doubt as to its permanent success. The value of this 
work for all the Jews of the world is very high. 
Palestine will be a cultural center for all of Jewry, a 
refuge for the persecuted, a field of activity for the 
best among us — an ideal that will unite all the Jews 
of the entire world and bring them spiritual 

I have seen our youth in Palestine cheer fully doing 
hard labor which better and more modern 
equipment could have rendered less difficult and 
more productive. I have seen a supremely 
courageous little band of colonists weighted down 
under an enormous burden of debts which some of 
their enthusiastic Zionist brethren could so easily 
have lightened. These young people must be 
helped as much as possible in their struggle. Their 
physical well-being must be preserved. It is our 


sacred duty; for they are sacrificing themselves for 
the soul and the repute of the entire Jewish people. 

We must prove that we are a people of sufficient 
vigor and vitality to accomplish our great task, to 
create a center and a sup port for future generations. 
May the land of Palestine come to mean to us and 
to our children what the Temple of Solomon meant 
to our ancestors! 

No Jew can truly sense this meaning un less he 
joyfully contributes his share to the Jewish work, 
the Jewish cause. 

With the vision of genius, Herzl saw that the 
rehabilitation of Palestine would lend a new 
cohesive force, a new meaning, and a new dignity 
to the Jewish people. 

We must not merely aid in this work, but we must 
adhere to the lofty outlook of the founder of the 

In view of the present situation of world Jewry, it is 
now more then ever necessary to preserve the 
Jewish community in a vital form. This end can best 
be attained by the colonization of Palestine, a work 
in which world Jewry is united, and by the 
fostering of the Jewish spiritual tradition. 

The publication of my book in the language of our 
fathers fills me with particular delight. It is 
symptomatic of the metamorphosis which that 


language has undergone. Its use is no longer 
limited to the communication of purely Jewish 
matters to Jews; it is beginning to embrace all fields 
of human interest. This revival of our tongue 
constitutes an important factor in our struggle for 

The rebuilding of Palestine as the Jewish National 
Home differs fundamentally from all other Jewish 
activities of our time. This is a movement to aid not 
individuals, but an entire nation. The Jewish people 
will have to provide funds for this constructive 
work for many years to come. So stupendous and 
unique a task as the up-building of Palestine must 
take a course of constant, gradual development. 

But our work is progressing. In recent years large 
and valuable stretches of Palestinian land have 
become the property of the Jewish people. Jewish 
hands are reclaiming more and more neglected and 
waste lands and transforming them into fertile 
fields and orchards. 

We hope that Jewish national life in Palestine will 
make sufficiently great strides to become the basis 
of a new intellectual and cultural creativeness. The 
Jewish people— free of petty chauvinism and of the 
evils of European nationalism, living peacefully 
side by side with the Arabs, who enjoy equal 
rights — should be enabled to lead its national life in 
its ancient homeland, so that it may again assume a 
dominant r 61 e in the civilization of the world. 


Situated as it is on the borderland between the 
Orient and the Occident, the Jewish National Home 
may be able to play an important part in the 
development of a new humanity. 

Jewish nationalism is a necessity be cause only 
through a consolidation of our national life can we 
eliminate those conflicts from which the Jews suffer 
to-day. May the time soon come when this 
nationalism will have become so thoroughly a 
matter of course that it will no longer be necessary 
for us to give it special emphasis. 

I believe in the actuality of Jewish nationality, and I 
believe that every Jew has duties toward his 
coreligionists. The meaning of Zionism is thus 
many-sided. It opens out to Jews who are 
despairing in the Ukrainian hell or in Poland, hope 
for a more human existence. Through the re turn of 
Jews to Palestine, and thus back to normal and 
healthy economic life, Zion ism means, too, a 
productive function, which should enrich mankind 
at large. But the chief point is that Zionism must 
tend to strengthen the dignity and self- respect of 
Jews in Diaspora. I have always been annoyed by 
the undignified assimilationist cravings and 
strivings which I have observed in so many of my 

Through the founding of a Jewish Commonwealth 
in Palestine, the Jewish people will again be in a 
position to bring their creative faculties into full 


play. Through the erection of the Hebrew 
University and similar institutions, the Jewish 
people will not only help their own national 
renaissance, but will enrich their moral culture and 
knowledge; and, as in centuries past, be directed to 
new and better ways than those which present 
world conditions necessarily entail for them. 

A special task devolves upon the He brew 
University in the spiritual direction and education 
of the laboring sections of our people in the land. In 
Palestine it is not our aim to create another people 
of city dwellers leading the same life as in the 
European cities and possessing the European 
bourgeois standards and conceptions. We aim at 
creating a people of workers, at creating the Jewish 
village in the first place, and we desire that the 
treasures of culture should be accessible to our 
laboring class, especially since Jews in all circum 
stances, as we know, place education above all 
things. In this connection it devolves upon the 
University to create something unique in order to 
serve the specific needs of the forms of life 
developed by our people in Palestine. 

A University is a place where the universality of the 
human spirit manifests itself. Science and 
investigation recognize as their aim the truth only. 
It is natural, therefore, that institutions which serve 
the interests of science should be a factor making 
for the union of nations and men. Unfortunately, 


the universities of Europe to-day are for the most 
part the nurseries of chauvinism and of a blind 
intolerance of all things foreign to the particular 
nation or race, of all things bearing the stamp of a 
different individuality. Under this regime the Jews 
are the principal sufferers, not only because they 
are thwarted in their desire for free participation 
and in their striving for education, but also because 
most Jews find themselves particularly cramped in 
this spirit of narrow nationalism. I should like to 
express the hope that our University will always be 
free from this evil, that teachers and students will 
always preserve the conscious ness that they serve 
their people best when they maintain its union with 
humanity and with the highest human values. 





( The Ott and Oze Societies are international 
organizations working for the betterment of living and 
working conditions among the Jews of eastern Europe.) 

It is no easy task for me to overcome my inclination 
to a life of quiet contemplation. Nevertheless, to the 
cry of the Ort and Oze Societies I have been unable 
to turn a deaf ear, for it is at the same time, as it 
were, the cry of our heavily burdened people, to 
whose voice I respond. 

The situation of our Jewish communities scattered 
throughout the world forms at once a barometer of 
the moral standard in the political world. For what 
could be more characteristic of the level of political 
morality and righteousness than the attitude of the 
nations toward a defenseless minority whose 
peculiarity it is to preserve its ancient traditions of 

In our day this barometer stands very low. We feel 
it painfully in our fate. But even this very 
depression confirms me in the Conviction that the 
preservation and the consolidation of this 
community is our duty. Within the traditions of the 


Jewish people exists a striving toward righteous 
ness and understanding that should be of service to 
the rest of the nations, both now and in the future. 
Spinoza and Karl Marx are the children of this 

Whoever will preserve the spirit must also take care 
of the body to which the spirit is bound. The Oze 
Society literally cares for the body of our people in 
eastern Europe. It is working indefatigably for the 
physical preservation of our economically heavily 
burdened people, while the Ort Society is striving 
to remove a social and economically burdensome 
wrong from which the Jewish people have suffered 
from the time of the Middle Ages. Because in the 
Middle Ages all the directly productive vocations 
were closed to us, we were driven to adopt purely 
mercantile vocations. 

The only effective help that can be given the Jewish 
people in these eastern lands is to throw open to 
them the new fields of vocational activity for which 
they are striving all over the world. This is the 
difficult problem which the Ort Society is success 
fully tackling. 

To you, our English brethren, has now come the 
call to collaborate in the great work which has been 
inaugurated by celebrated men. The last years, yes, 
even the last days, have brought us a 


disappointment which you in particular must feel 
keenly. Do not bemoan the hardness of fate, but in 
this occurrence see rather a motive for both being 
and remaining faithful to the Jewish community. I 
am firmly convinced that thus we shall serve in 
directly the aims of humanity in general, which 
aims forever must remain, with us, the highest. 

Remember that difficulties and obstacles always 
form for any community a valuable source of 
strength and health. We should not have survived 
as a community all the centuries if we had had a 
bed of roses. Of that I am strongly convinced. 

But we have a still better consolation. The number 
of our friends is not great, but among them are men 
of lofty spirit and righteousness who have devoted 
their lives to ennobling the human race and to the 
liberation of individuals from degrading 





One ought to be ashamed to make use of the 
wonders of science embodied in a radio set, the 
while appreciating them as little as a cow 
appreciates the botanic marvels in the plants she 

Let us not forget how humanity came into 
possession of this wonderful means of 
communication. The source of all scientific 
advancement is the God-given curiosity of the 
toiling experimenter and the constructive fantasy of 
the technical inventor. 

Remember Oerstedt, who first discovered the 
magnetic influence of electro-magnetic currents; 
remember Reis, who first employed this influence 
to create sound in an electro-magnetic way; Bell, 
who, by using sensitive contacts, transferred sound 
waves with his microphone into variable electric 
currents. Remember furthermore. Max well, who 
mathematically proved the existence of electric 
waves, and Hertz, who first created them with the 
help of a spark. Think especially of Lieben, who, 
with his Fleming valve, invented an incomparable 
detector organ for electric waves which 
simultaneously turned out to be an ideally simple 
instrument for the creation of electric waves. 
Remember thankfully the army of nameless 


technicians who simplified radio instruments and 
adapted them to mass production so that they 
became accessible to everybody. 

It was the scientists who first made true democracy 
possible, for not only did they lighten our daily 
tasks but they made the finest works of art and 
thought, whose enjoyment until recently was the 
privilege of the favored classes, accessible to all. 
Thus they awakened the nations from their 
sluggish dullness. 

The radio broadcast has a unique function to fill in 
bringing nations together. It can be used for 
strengthening that feeling of mutual friendship 
which so easily turns into mistrust and enmity. 

Until our day people learned to know each other 
only through the distorting mirror of their own 
daily press. Radio shows them to each other in the 
liveliest form, and, in the main, from their most 
lovable sides. 



I believe in intuition and inspiration. . . At times I 
feel certain I am right while not knowing the reason. 
When the eclipse of 1919 confirmed my intuition, I 
was not in the least surprised. In fact, I would have 
been astonished had it turned out otherwise. 
Imagination is more important than knowledge. 
For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination 
embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, 
giving birth to evolution. It is, strictly speaking, a 
real factor in scientific research. 

k k k 

The basis of all scientific work is the conviction that 
the world is an ordered and comprehensive entity, 
which is a religious sentiment. My religious feeling 
is a humble amazement at the order revealed in the 
small patch of reality to which our feeble 
intelligence is equal. 

k k k 

By furthering logical thought and a logical attitude, 
science can diminish the amount of superstition in 
the world. There is no doubt that all but the crudest 
scientific work is based on a firm belief— akin to 
religious feeling — in the rationality and 
comprehensibility of the world. 


Music and physical research work originate in 
different sources, but they are interrelated through 
their common aim, which is the desire to express 
the unknown. Their reactions are different, but 
their results are supplementary. As to artistic and 
scientific creation, I hold with Schopenhauer that 
their strongest motive is the desire to leave behind 
the rawness and monotony of every day life, so as 
to take refuge in a world crowded with the images 
of our own creation. This world may consist of 
musical notes as well as of mathematical rules. We 
try to compose a comprehensive picture of the 
world in which we are at home and which gives us 
a stability that cannot be found in our external life. 

k k k 

Science exists for Science's sake, like Art for Art's 
sake, and does not go in for special pleading or for 
the demonstration of absurdities. 

k k k 

A law cannot be definite for the one reason that the 
conceptions with which we formulate it develop 
and may prove insufficient in the future. There 
remains at the bottom of every thesis and of every 
proof some remainder of the dogma of in fallibility. 

k k k 

In every naturalist there must be a kind of religious 
feeling; for he cannot imagine that the connections 


into which he sees have been thought of by him for 
the first time. 

He rather has the feeling of a child, over whom a 
grown-up person rules. 

it it it 

We can only see the universe by the impressions of 
our senses reflecting indirectly the things of reality. 

it it it 

Among scientists in search of truth wars do not 

it it it 

There is no universe beyond the universe for us. It 
is not part of our concept. Of course, you must not 
take the comparison with the globe literally. I am 
only speaking in symbols. Most mistakes in 
philosophy and logic occur because the human 
mind is apt to take the symbol for the reality. 

it it it 

I see a pattern. But my imagination can not picture 
the maker of that pattern. I see the clock. But I 
cannot envisage the clock- maker. The human mind 
is unable to conceive of the four dimensions. How 
can it conceive of a God, before whom a thousand 
years and a thousand dimensions are as one? 


Imagine a bedbug completely flattened out, living 
on the surface of a globe. This bedbug may be 
gifted with analysis, he may study physics, he may 
even write a book. His universe will be two- 
dimensional. He may even intellectually or 
mathematically conceive of a third dimension, but 
he can not visualize it. Man is in the same position, 
as the unfortunate bedbug, except that he is three- 
dimensional. Man can imagine a fourth dimension 
mathematically, but he cannot see it, he cannot 
visualize it, he can not represent it physically. It 
exists only mathematically for him. The mind 
cannot grasp it. 


Everyone sits in the prison of his own ideas; he 
must burst it open, and that in his youth, and so try 
to test his ideas on reality. But in a couple of 
centuries there comes another, perhaps, who 
refutes him. It is true that this will not happen to 
the artist in his uniqueness. It is all within the 
nature of research and it is not at all sad. 

k k k 

Youth is always the same, endlessly the same. 

k k k 

I do not believe individuals possess any unique 
gifts. I only believe that there exists on one hand 
talent and on the other hand developed 

k k k 

In Mme. Curie I can see no more than a brilliant 
exception. Even if there were more woman 
scientists of like caliber they would serve as no 
argument against the fundamental weakness of the 
feminine organization. 

k k k 

Before God we are relatively all equally wise — 
equally foolish. 

k k k 


Working is thinking, hence it is not always easy to 
give an exact accounting of one's time. Usually I 
work about four to six hours a day. I am not a very 
diligent man. 

* k k 

The intellectuals always have micro scopes before 
their eyes. 

k k * 

Never forget that the fruit of our labor does not 
constitute an end in itself. Eco nomic production 
should make life possible, beautiful, and noble. We 
must not permit ourselves to be degraded into 
mere slaves of production. 

k k k 

Hitler is no more representative of the Germany of 
this decade than are the smaller anti-Semitic 
disturbances. Hitler is living — or shall I say 
sitting? — on the empty stomach of Germany. As 
soon as economic conditions improve. Hitler will 
sink into oblivion. He dramatizes impossible 
extremes in an amateurish manner. 

Reduced to a formula, one might say simply that an 
empty stomach is not a good political adviser. 
Unfortunately, the corollary also is true, namely, 
that better political insight has a hard time winning 
its way as long as there is little prospect of filling 
the stomach. 


Personally, I feel that there is enough technical 
knowledge accumulated in the world to-day to 
make conditions such as we have in Germany 
unnecessary. It should be possible to produce 
enough of the necessaries of life to satisfy 
everybody and at the same time give work to 
everybody. That, of course, means short hours and 
high wages, and not, as is so often advocated, 
longer hours and lower wages. 

k k k 

Mass psychology is a difficult thing to fathom. I 
fear historians never have taken the factor of mass 
psychology sufficiently into account in writing 
history. They look upon events in retrospect with 
the idea that they can define exactly the causes that 
led up to this or that outstanding event. In reality, 
behind these apparent causes there are indefinable 
factors of mass psychology about which we know 
little or nothing. 

My own case is, alas, an illustration. Why popular 
fancy should seize upon me, a scientist dealing in 
abstract things and happy if left alone, is one of 
those manifestations of mass psychology that are 
beyond me. I think it is terrible that this should be 
so and I suffer more than anybody can imagine. 

k k k 

I dislike to apply a yardstick to such imponderables 
as genius. Shaw is undoubtedly one of the world's 


greatest figures, both as a writer and as a man. I 
once said of him that his plays remind me of 

There is not one superfluous word in Shaw's prose, 
just as there is not one superfluous note in Mozart's 
music. The one in the medium of language, the 
other in the medium of melody, expresses perfectly 
with almost superhuman precision, the message of 
his art and his soul.